A side-channel vulnerability affecting Intel x86 and few ARM-based microprocessors allowing user processes to read memory belonging to the kernel. Affects various OSes like Linux, OS X, and Windows. Published in January 2018.

A side-channel vulnerability affecting Intel x86 and few ARM-based microprocessors allowing user processes to read memory belonging to the kernel. Affects various OSes like Linux, OS X, and Windows. Published in January 2018.

The attack exploits timing differences in out-of-order instruction execution, coupled with a privilege escalation vulnerability specific to Intel processors, due to which speculatively executed instructions can bypass memory protection mechanisms. Meltdown allows user processes to read memory belonging to the kernel or other processes. In particular, it breaks the security between virtual machines running on the same host.

See full attack details at https://meltdownattack.com

See our canonical question on this site at Meltdown and Spectre Attacks

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